A Fashion Editor’s Work-From-Home Style Diary: Why Leggings Are the Ultimate Multitasker

It’s a well-known fact that establishing a new habit or routine can be a big challenge. Upending old habits and swapping them for new ones doesn’t come naturally, or right away, as many New Year’s resolution makers often discover.

Now apply that feeling to the millions of people around the world who are now practicing social distancing and quarantine. It’s utterly disorienting — and that’s not even counting the hundreds of thousands of people who are actually getting sick.

I’ve tried my own hand at establishing a productive new routine while working from home. Some habits — like getting ready for the work day and doing breathing exercises while I walk my dog outside — have stuck.

Others … have not. Without a commute time into the office, I thought that I would instantly be able to adopt a morning workout routine before starting my day. I imagined myself walking downstairs in my athletic clothes, coffee in hand, ready to unroll my yoga mat and grab a set of weights. After a solid 45-60 minutes, I would be sweaty and feeling accomplished, with time to spare.

That hasn’t happened once. I’m notoriously both an excellent sleeper and NOT a morning person. While I usually push those qualities aside during normal times, forgoing my requisite eight hours of sleep for something else, now I’m letting myself sleep as long as I want because my health depends on it.

This means workouts have been pushed to late evenings — too late, really. So at the end of last week, I decided to bend a few of my work-from-home style rules and get dressed in my workout clothes so that I could squeeze in a session during lunchtime. I put on a pair of wear-everywhere black leggings (I love Commando’s classic high-waisted version), my sports bra and tank, and a big turtleneck sweater on top. This outfit lets me do video meetings that I need to do but also allows me to sneak in a quick yoga session or a run with my dog. I can wear sneakers with it (something I really won’t do when I’m wearing jeans), and I can also wear the big fuzzy slippers that I am still wearing inside most days.

The fashion world has a complicated relationship with leggings (myself included) but, as the New York Times‘ Vanessa Friedman declared a year ago, they are here to stay — and now, likely, more than ever before. Pandemic or no pandemic, the legging is probably the most-worn item of clothing for many American women (and some men). 

It’s the ultimate multitasker, especially now. Wear them for the yoga class or a run outside, throw a jacket over them for a requisite grocery run. Wear them with a sweater and earrings for a video meeting, dress them up a little more for date night in — you get the idea. I’m not the first to extol the many virtues of the legging. But this time around, this stretchy piece of leg wear feels like much more natural than like a Pilates mom’s wardrobe staple. It’s the at-home survivalist uniform.

Shop the look:

A big fluffy slipper bootie

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Shepherd of Sweden Ulla sheepskin slipper.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Saint Bernard

To buy: Shepherd of Sweden sheepskin Ulla slipper, $122 (was $175)

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Ugg Amary faux-fur slipper bootie.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Nordstrom

To buy: Ugg Amary faux-fur slipper bootie, $60 (was $100)

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Dearfoams fluffy sherpa slipper bootie.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Dearfoams

To buy: Dearfoams sherpa slipper bootie, $34

Wear-all-day leggings

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Commando Classic leggings with Perfect Control.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Commando

To buy: Commando Classic leggings, $88

the upside leggings, matches fashion, work from home, style diary
The Upside tiger print high-rise leggings.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Matches Fashion

To buy: The Upside high-rise leggings, $111

bandier leggings, work from home fashion, style diary
Bandier Center Stage leggings.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Bandier

To buy: Bandier Center Stage leggings, $98.

Professional-on-top oversize turtleneck sweater

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Other Stories slouchy oversize turtleneck sweater.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Other Stories

To buy: Other Stories oversize turtleneck sweater, $60.

paige raundi sweater, shopbop, work from home fashion, style diary
Paige Raundi cutout turtleneck sweater.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Shopbop

To buy: Paige Raundi turtleneck sweater, $260.

frame sweater, work from home fashion, style diary
Frame high-low turtleneck sweater.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Farfetch

To buy: Frame high-low turtleneck sweater, $380 (was $545)

Daytime pearl earrings

Mejuri jewelry, pearl earrings, work from home fashion, style diary
Mejuri organic pearl hoop earrings.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Mejuri

To buy: Mejuri organic pearl hoops, $75.

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Tory Burch crystal heart and pearl drop earrings.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Tory Burch

To buy: Tory Burch crystal heart and pearl drop earrings, $100 (was $178).

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Majorica gold and pearl earrings.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Saks Fifth Avenue

To buy: Majorica gold and pearl earrings, $70 (was $95)

All products featured have been independently selected and curated by our editorial team. If you buy something through our retail links, we may earn commission and the retailer may receive certain auditable data for accounting purposes.

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